Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar of Texas told MSNBC Wednesday that Mexico and other countries needed to do more to help address the border crisis.
“Mexico and the other countries have certain laws on the books right now. For example, Mexico has a law that says that migrants or anybody that comes in into the — into Mexico has to come through a port of entry, or airport and leave the same way,” Cuellar told MSNBC’s Mike Barncile and Jonathan Lemire on “Morning Joe.”
“So what they’re doing right now is against Mexican law, so we have to get the Mexicans and other countries to do more, otherwise, we — we’re just going be playing defense on the 1-yard line called the U.S. border, instead of playing defense on their 20-yard line,” Cuellar continued.
United States Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) encountered over 2.3 million migrants in Fiscal Year 2022, while another 600,000 migrants evaded CBP that fiscal year, Fox News reported. CBP reported encountering 230,000 people in October, the first month of fiscal year 2023, and a record 233,470 people in November, the second month of fiscal year 2023, according to a Friday release.
Cuellar also called for addressing the immigration system through legislation. The Supreme Court left Title 42, a public-health measure used by the Trump administration to expel illegal immigrants, in place pending arguments scheduled for February in a 5-4 ruling Tuesday.
“One of the best immigration proposals that I saw was Kennedy and McCain, just some years ago, and it’s something that we don’t have to reinvent the wheel, it’s already there. It’s been drafted already,” Cuellar said, discussing a proposal by then-Democratic Sen. Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts and then-Republican Sen. John McCain that did not get passed. “We just got to have the initiative or the fortitude to get it done. But as you know, the other party, at times Republicans would say ‘secure the border, then we can do this.’ So the goalpost keeps moving.”
Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, who is likely the next Speaker of the House, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.
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